Remember back in high school when popular girls and boys always wore gold jewelry, and their friends wore silver? As cool as that was, wearing copper and brass was too. Copper and brass were not as popular since they were pricey. You have to know how to keep brass jewelry from tarnishing, and we are going to show you how. Before we get deeper into the tips to clean it, we want to explain what tarnish means.
Does brass tarnish? To tarnish is to lose luster. When it comes to metal, all it takes for it to tarnish is exposure to air and moisture. As we went deeper into this topic, we learned that tarnishing goes far beyond metal. It is occurring right before our eyes daily. It happens to the simple items that we see every day. Those simple items include our precious brass jewelry pieces. Handling them with care is the best thing to do.
Brass jewelry was popular in ancient times. It is known for providing many potentially healing benefits to those wearing it. It may have a positive effect on your internal body. It also has a positive impact on the outside. Brass may be one of the best metals to bring peacefulness by eliminating negative influences.
The brass jewelry that you see every day is composed of a blend of copper and zinc. The potential benefits of both of these elements are that they may help kill harmful microbes. They could also potentially help stimulate the flow of energy and create balance within the body.
To understand how to properly care for a certain precious metal we must first find out what it is made of and what reactions it may have to different things. We must limit the item’s exposure to certain things in its environment. If you want to know how to keep brass jewelry from tarnishing you should remember that keeping it as dry as possible is key to preserving it. You might like to see a nice dark patina form on the surface of an antique vase but not on your favorite necklace.
The assumption is that by landing on our blog post, you’re on a mission to learn how to keep brass jewelry from tarnishing. Let’s take that journey together and see what brass tarnish-removing strategies we can uncover. We’ll discuss popular DIY brass cleaning myths. We’ll also present what we feel is the most effective and safe method to remove tarnish from brass jewelry. That method is the Champion Polishing Cloth.
What Exactly is Brass?
Brass is a zinc and copper alloy with an attractive shiny luster. It is a metal that is often used in different proportions for many purposes in mechanical and electrical settings. It can also be engraved and used for fancy decoration and jewelry. It has been used for many centuries by many different people to make unique and beautiful things. Brass has to be heated to more than 900 degrees Fahrenheit to melt.
Brass is a very attractive material and it can be used to make wonderful home decor. Brass is resistant to corrosion so it will last. It’s very shiny like gold. Bronze is a different blend and is simply more expensive than brass because that blend contains more copper. Brass can last one thousand years if you use an effective technique to prevent damage to the item and eliminate any tarnishing. Brass that is left untouched will begin to corrode and then it will develop a layer of tarnish over time. It will never rust. Brass does not rust but it will get a pearly, cloudy look if it is not cared for efficiently. Later on in our post, we’ll get into how to keep brass jewelry from tarnishing.
You might not be sure what something is really made of. If you make a scratch on a hidden area of a piece of brass you should be able to see a tiny yellow scratch if the item is truly made of brass. If you reveal a silver color in the scratch then the material is probably a white metal, primarily zinc. If a magnet is attracted to the object then it’s not solid brass although it could be plated. Brass is a hard yet workable material. Aluminum brass alloys are a very strong blend and they resist corrosion well.
Calamine brass is one of the earliest forms of brass. In ancient Rome, it was used to make lots of things including ornate jewelry. In Europe, it was often used for engraved nameplates in cemeteries. Over history, brass has been used to make candle holders and special items like chandeliers and platters. It can be a pretty and durable option when you’re looking for different options while you’re decorating.
Why Choose Brass?
Brass jewelry looks like it’s gold but is very durable and much more affordable. It can last many, many years if you care for it properly. Brass is a shiny and beautiful material. Keeping all of your brass jewelry as dry as possible will prevent that green film from forming on the skin. If you see a dark green area start to form where your brass ring rests on your finger, it’s caused by oxidation. It’s simply a copper carbonate residue that is left on the skin. The Champion Polishing Cloth is the solution for how to keep brass jewelry from tarnishing.
By using the Champion Polishing Cloth to remove tarnish from your brass jewelry, not only will you solve the tarnishing issue, but you will provide your brass jewelry with a protective film. The Champion Polishing Cloth was formulated with a unique brass cleaning and polishing chemistry. Its unique cleaning and polishing fabric is saturated with a proprietary formula that not only removes tarnish from brass jewelry but also penetrates deep into the metal’s pores. It leaves behind an invisible, wax-like protective film. Not only does this protective film preserve the lustrous shine you’ve achieved, but this wax-like protective coating eliminates future tarnishing. Because of this, the application of lacquer after polishing is not needed!
All metals can oxidize even from simple air exposure. Brass jewelry can easily develop a blackish tarnish over time if not properly cared for.
Brass accessories can often brighten your look. If you can, you should avoid storing your jewelry in humid areas like in the bathroom. Moisture is the ultimate enemy when it comes to brass. Keep your jewelry wiped dry and in a dry spot. Maybe keep it near some warm windows. Storing brass jewelry either wrapped in an anti-tarnish cloth and/or an anti-tarnish bag is the best way to preserve its shine and quality.
Polishing your brass often just makes it look better. It gives it that classic, clean look that completes the style you’re looking for. No one likes to see dull candlesticks at the Christmas dinner table. You want that old brass heirloom pot and candleholders to sparkle and gleam just like your necklace does. They will look great neatly polished next to all of the cutlery and pretty china on the kitchen table. You can restore your jewelry’s shine with the Champion Polishing Cloth.
How Do I Keep Brass Jewelry Shining?
What follows is a discussion on some controversial DIY brass cleaning methods. The Internet is full of these so-called DIY cleaning recipes. There are some pros and definitely some cons to each. Let’s take a look at the particulars.
There are a few popular DIY for cleaning brass jewelry that involves the use of common household items such as vinegar, lemon juice, salt, baking soda, toothpaste, toothbrushes, ketchup, etc.
Using an abrasive to polish a surface is a bit too aggressive. It actually takes a layer off of the surface of the brass object. It can make your brass have a bit of a dull look compared to a buff and shine approach. If there are any pits, lines, or scratches in your brass jewelry, rather than using an abrasive fine-grit cleaner, choose instead the Champion Polishing Cloth. Anything that is abrasive will do more harm than good.
A specialized polishing cloth will help you keep your brass protected, clean, and shiny. It can get expensive to drop off items to be polished by a professional. You may be tempted to go the DIY route, but soon, we’ll expose the DIY brass jewelry cleaning myth. Extra care needs to be taken when cleaning and polishing brass jewelry that may contain precious gemstones.
If you have a piece of brass jewelry that is spotted, stained, or tarnished, beware of attempting to soak it in a DIY solution. There are many so-called DIY tricks and tips floating around the Internet that imply they are a cheap and easy solution for cleaning brass jewelry. Take that information with a grain of salt. They tell you that by swishing your bracelets around in a container of some DIY mixture, your tarnish will magically disappear. Or, they’ll tell you that by taking a teaspoon of salt mixed together with a half cup of vinegar, you’ll remove tarnish easily. Our response to these myths is one of shock.
What is incredulous about these DIY methods is nowhere do they talk about the inherent dangers to the integrity of the brass piece itself. These methods seem to be helpful and cheap, but unfortunately, we’ve heard too many sad tales from our customers who have been left in tears because their prized pieces of jewelry had been destroyed by these DIY methods.
One particular recipe involves your choice of either toothpaste or baking soda mixed with vinegar. The goal is to create a paste that is brushed onto your brass jewelry with an old toothbrush. The recipe goes on to state that you should allow this paste solution to lay on the brass jewelry’s surface for around ten minutes.
The recipe goes on to state that if it’s an intricately designed piece of brass jewelry, allowing this DIY paste to sit for ten minutes will allow it to penetrate deep into the crevices. Finally, the recipe mentions that you are to wash off the residue of the paste in a sink of water, rub the pieces while rinsing, and then allow your brass jewelry to dry.
When we first read this recipe, we could honestly state that our eyeballs almost popped out of our heads! Why? Well, we don’t dispute that the combination of baking soda or toothpaste with vinegar would not remove the tarnish. We’re fairly sure it would work. The problem we’ve seen with this recipe is that it fails to warn the reader of the potential dangers to brass jewelry.
First, baking soda and toothpaste are abrasive components. Anything abrasive used on tarnished brass jewelry will remove the tarnish, but it will also scratch it. Unless the user takes great care and has experience using such substances, more unnecessary damage will occur to the brass’s surface.
Vinegar, because of its acidity, is not only an aggressive cleaner, but it’s rather corrosive. It can potentially etch and pit brass jewelry. The goal is for your brass jewelry to look beautiful. You’re not looking to destroy the integrity and appearance of your brass jewelry.
Herein lies the big problem with such DIY brass jewelry cleaning methods. There is a total lack of understanding of how such substances can react with a metal’s surface. Metal corrodes and tarnishes because it’s exposed to a multitude of external elements. Most are too harsh for fragile items such as brass jewelry.
To suggest the use of vinegar, toothpaste, baking soda, or salt for cleaning tarnish from brass illustrates a complete failure of understanding how such components can do more harm than good to brass jewelry.
To create a safe and effective brass jewelry cleaner and polish, one must at the minimum possess a basic understanding of chemistry. Utilizing aggressive ingredients such as vinegar, baking soda, salt, etc. requires in-depth knowledge in the use of buffers, chelators, neutralizers, surfactants, etc. The number one goal is to provide a cleaner that can effectively remove tarnish, while at the same time factoring in the balancing act needed to protect the brass surface from harm.
Another common DIY brass cleaning recipe involves the use of ketchup and lemon juice. Both these ingredients are acidic and as we’ve already stated, acids will remove tarnish but they will also inevitably damage the brass surface, accelerating the return of tarnish. We don’t deny that these DIY ingredients won’t remove tarnish, but we must emphasize that they bring too much unnecessary risk to the cleaning process.
Initially, you may have thought that a DIY brass cleaning recipe would be an easy enough solution for how to keep brass jewelry from tarnishing. Unfortunately, this is not the case. With that said, we will not leave you high and dry. We can offer you an extremely effective and safe brass jewelry cleaning solution. The Champion Polishing Cloth has been removing tarnish from brass jewelry for over 90 years, and it is still doing so today!
Use your polishing cloth to give the brass pieces a scrub and remove any remaining tarnish. Then, give the brass jewelry a final shine with a soft, dry, clean buffing cloth. Repeat polishing until the entire piece shines like glass.
How Can I Keep Tarnish Away?
Not allowing the tarnish to settle in is the best way to keep your brass looking great. Keep all brass jewelry away from liquids and moisture. Don’t take a shower or bath with your brass jewelry on. When washing your hands with soap and water, the soap should be washed off thoroughly. Make sure to completely dry your hands, and if you’re wearing any brass jewelry such as rings or bracelets, make sure those are dried as well. If it’s not too inconvenient, remove any brass jewelry such as rings or bracelets prior to handwashing.
Chemicals can really damage your jewelry. If you notice your brass jewelry starting to wear you should treat it more carefully and try not to wear the piece as often. Oils from our own skin can cause brass jewelry to wear down and tarnish as well.
Don’t let your brass jewelry get wet. Perfume and lotion, handwashing, and sweating can all spell destruction when it comes to your brass jewelry. The moisture in the air even causes the brass metal to oxidize. If your brass jewelry does get wet, dry it thoroughly as soon as possible.
Humid air in the bedroom where you store your brass jewelry may be causing it to tarnish faster. Anti-tarnish bags are great for storing your brass jewelry. Always store your brass jewelry in anti-tarnish bags which will minimize their exposure to sunlight and air. Just be sure to squeeze out all of the excess air when you’re sealing the bag and tuck it in your drawer.
Using a dehumidifier for damp areas can help keep the moisture levels down. Damp conditions can tarnish brass jewelry. Sulfur in the air will also play a part in the tarnishing process.
Keeping a consistent maintenance schedule for your brass jewelry will go far in preventing any oxidation or tarnishing. Whether you own antique brass jewelry or brass jewelry that you’ve recently purchased, you’ll need to invest in a quality brass polishing cloth. The Champion Polishing Cloth is a brass cleaner and polish with over 90 years of experience. It is simple and safe to use. Simply remove the cloth from its seal-tight package and begin to rub away tarnish from your brass jewelry. Move the polishing cloth in a circular motion over the brass item. Keep rubbing until you feel the tarnish has been removed. Next, grab a soft, dry, clean buffing cloth and continue buffing until the area has a beautiful shine. Move onto the next section to be cleaned and repeat the process until the entire piece is completely shiny!
A Tale About How to Keep Brass Jewelry from Tarnishing
The answer to keeping your brass jewelry in great shape is simple. Clean and polish your brass jewelry often so you can prevent tarnish from forming on it. From your shiny brass bracelet to the old antique brass necklace store in your bedroom, you should make sure that cleaning the tarnish off of any of your brass jewelry pieces is part of your usual housekeeping routine.
We heard a story once from some friends about how some of their brass jewelry became tarnished because they were not careful with how they handled and stored it. They were cooking breakfast one morning and having their coffee when they noticed how tarnished their faucets had become. They had left a brass bracelet hanging around one of the faucet handles, which caused the bracelet to develop an awful green residue. They love organization but they have a bad habit of always hanging jewelry off of something that’s handy. They let their brass jewelry get exposed to a ton of moisture and the brass jewelry began to oxidize.
Our friends wanted to learn how to keep brass jewelry from tarnishing. They were curious about some of the DIY brass cleaning methods found on the Internet. Interestingly, they tried one of the DIY methods and it did remove some of the tarnish, but they noticed that almost immediately, the tarnish started to return. At that point, they contacted us, told us the situation, and we recommended the Champion Polishing Cloth.
How Should I Polish and Clean Brass Jewelry?
Rub off that grime and enjoy the shine. Wear your fancy brass jewelry and keep it looking fantastic. Brass jewelry is really easy to take care of once you know the proper method. You can make dirty brass look brand new again. Tarnish only covers the surface. What’s beneath is still shiny brass. Polishing keeps brass jewelry shiny and prevents stains. The Champion Polishing Cloth will remove that dark coating that makes a brass jewelry piece look worn and dull.
When your favorite pair of brass earrings are looking faded you should get out your polishing cloth and start to rub. The Champion Polishing Cloth is the best friend of brass jewelry. It’s the best polishing cloth and it works wonders on removing tarnish from brass jewelry. Air and moisture are always lurking, and if your brass jewelry is not protected, then expect it to become tarnished. To fight off that annoying tarnish, take out the Champion Polishing Cloth and watch tarnish run away!
If polishing your brass jewelry seemed like an impossible task, don’t fret. We have a simple, safe, and effective method for you! Wondering how to keep brass jewelry from tarnishing? The answer is at your fingertips: the Champion Polishing Cloth.
Removing tarnish from brass jewelry does not need to involve messy and harmful DIY recipes. Keep it simple. Keep it safe. It doesn’t get any easier or more effective than the Champion Polishing Cloth. No matter how tarnished your brass jewelry appears, the Champion Polishing Cloth will have your brass jewelry looking new. Simply remove the cloth from its seal-tight package and begin. Start by rubbing a small area of your brass jewelry. Then, grab a soft, dry, clean buffing cloth and buff until you reach a brilliant shine. Repeat the process on a new section and continue until the entire piece looks brand new!
Oxidation and Tarnish
How does brass jewelry get tarnished?
Tarnishing is a chemical process your jewelry undergoes once it gets exposed to air. Everything goes through this stage, but we’re talking about brass here. Brass tarnishes over time. For instance, swimmers wearing brass jewelry do not often see the effects when they go into the water. With the sensitivity of brass, though, tarnishing won’t take long to see.
Your jewelry has a natural layer initially that prevents tarnishing. Over time, that natural protective layer becomes tarnished due to its exposure to air, moisture, and other substances. Ultimately, that tarnish needs to be dealt with and cleaned.
Common DIY Brass Jewelry Cleaning Ingredients That You Shouldn’t Use
- Vinegar and salt
- Lemon juice and salt
- Ketchup or tomato paste
- Baking soda
The above ingredients are often included in recipe guides about cleaning and removing tarnish from brass jewelry. On the surface (pun intended) they appear to be harmless, but upon closer inspection, they need to be considered carefully since they can ultimately cause more harm than good.
Any one of the above ingredients is either too acidic or too abrasive to be considered a safe brass cleaning component. Flat-out stay away from these types of DIY solutions. You get what you pay for, and the notion that they’re free and cheap can end up being extremely costly. Why? At the end of the day, if you end up with your beautiful brass jewelry ruined, ask yourself at what cost was it worth using a free DIY recipe?
Benefits of a Brass Polishing Cloth
When you’re ready to remove tarnish from your brass jewelry, the best brass cleaner is a simple and effective product called the Champion Polishing Cloth. It is a tried-and-true brass tarnish remover.
The Champion Polishing Cloth was first introduced on the market over 90 years ago. Fast forward to today, and it’s still manufactured with the same proprietary brass cleaning chemistry. Its unique and highly specialized cloth material, coupled together with its one-of-a-kind brass tarnish removing formulation, will easily remove the toughest tarnish from your intricately designed brass jewelry. Not only does it remove tarnish, but it penetrates into your brass jewelry’s metal pores and leaves behind an invisible wax-like protective film. This long-lasting protective film not only preserves a beautiful shine but also helps to stop tarnish from forming.
Alternative Polishing Cloths
There are various other so-called polishing cloth alternatives, such as microfiber cloths or simple household rags. To make those work, it is required to use either some of the aforementioned DIY brass cleaning solutions or run-of-the-mill brass cleaning liquids or pastes.
In all these instances, much caution needs to be used. Also, these methods are messy.
Daily Cleaning Keeps Brass from Tarnishing
For those that do not already have a Champion Polishing Cloth but want a harmless method to remove excess dirt and grime from brass jewelry pieces, you can try the following method. A simple solution of mild dish soap and some warm water can be used to wash off any oils, grease, dust, dirt, or grime. When finished, thoroughly rinse the brass jewelry item and be sure to thoroughly dry it.
At the bare minimum, if you’re unable to purchase the Champion Polishing Cloth, at least locate an anti-tarnish bag to store your brass jewelry piece in. Unless you’re able to safely apply an invisible wax-like protective film such as the one that the Champion Polishing Cloth provides, expect your brass jewelry to quickly start to tarnish.
Easier Said Than Done
Keeping brass from tarnishing is easier said than done. Left unattended, brass jewelry will begin to tarnish when exposed to air and moisture. One has choices when it comes to maintaining brass jewelry. There are messy and unnecessarily complicated DIY recipes available, or you can choose the simple, fast, and safe route: the Champion Polishing Cloth!
As stated earlier, there’s no need for additional cleaners or pastes. The Champion Polishing Cloth comes with an exclusive brass cleaning and polishing chemistry saturated within the cloth. Using it is as simple as removing it from its seal-tight package, polishing the tarnish off of the brass surface, and buffing the polished area with a soft, dry, clean cloth until you have a brilliant shine.
Not only does this process remove tarnish, but the shine seems to last forever! The invisible wax-like protective film that is imparted by the Champion Polishing Cloth allows the beautiful shine to go on and on!
The Ketchup Brass Jewelry Cleaning Method?
Earlier in this blog post, we briefly mentioned the DIY ketchup cleaning method for removing tarnish from brass jewelry. This recipe seems to be rather popular on the Internet, so we’ve decided to go deeper into its pros and cons.
Recipe after recipe claims that ketchup is an effective way to clean brass jewelry. They say that the acidic nature of ketchup is a benefit when cleaning brass jewelry. These recipes state that ketchup will remove dirt and tarnish. We don’t dispute this. Any acidic item is caustic and strong enough to not only remove tarnish but also remove other things that they shouldn’t.
Some recipes even state that the acid in ketchup has been known to be vital for cleaning brass jewels for years. Really? Who wants to risk applying acids to the most precious and fragile brass jewelry pieces? If something goes wrong, who’s responsible? We don’t know about you, but we’re not interested in finding out what any acid will do to something precious!
Rather than take an unnecessary risk with using acid to clean your brass jewelry, let’s look at an alternative solution that is both effective and safe.
We guess the reason why there’s such a proliferation of DIY recipes for cleaning brass has to do with the notion that since these items are already found in most homes, it’s a “free cleaning solution.” Are these recipes being offered on the Internet for altruistic reasons or are they posted online because the authors are looking for affiliate commissions or other monetary gains? That’s all well and good, but ultimately are they providing a real service to the reader?
As a small family business, we’re not trying to debunk these DIY recipes because we’re only interested in marketing our Champion Polishing Cloth. The fact remains that these recipes are simply too risky to attempt on precious brass jewelry pieces. We feel a sincere obligation to spread the word that there are professionally manufactured and cost-effective products designed to give customers solutions to their cleaning problems.
When it comes to cleaning brass jewelry, the assumption is that this jewelry is precious to the owner. Immediately, we consider this and we want our customers to be happy with the final result when it comes to cleaning their brass jewelry.
We’re confident in the effectiveness, and most importantly the safety, our polishing cloth provides when removing tarnish from brass jewelry. It is a fantastic brass cleaner and polish. We’ve yet to find a DIY recipe that is 100% safe to use. We’re not talking about effectiveness. Rather, we’re talking about the potential of long-term damage that such methods can cause.
Why a Protective Layer is Needed for Brass Jewelry
Inevitably, brass will tarnish without protection. When researching online for ways to protect the shine on your brass jewelry, there are a few common household items that are suggested. Let’s take a look at those suggestions. We’ll ultimately provide a tried-and-true method that protects and prolongs not only the integrity of your beautiful brass jewelry but its shine as well.
One suggested method to create a protective film on your brass jewelry is through the use of olive oil. The recipe mentions to rub a few drops of olive oil onto your brass jewelry and then further rub in with a microfiber cloth. Then, you’re supposed to remove any excess oil with another dry cloth. OK. There’s no doubt that putting a film of oil on your jewelry seems reasonable enough. It may protect your brass jewelry, but our concern is more about the mess it creates. Also, there’s always the chance of staining your clothing. If that happens, now you have to deal with how to remove an oil stain from your clothes.
Yet another example of how a DIY recipe leads to more headaches than you already had!
The next common DIY protective strategy floating around the Internet is to use coconut oil. It’s the same process of rubbing a few drops of coconut oil onto your brass jewelry and applying the same method as the olive oil. In this case, coconut oil is also a good protectant, but unfortunately, we’re not lubricating mechanical parts, door hinges/handles, or other things of the sort. This is brass jewelry you’re wearing. The downside is that this is another messy method and the clothing you’re wearing can become stained from the oil that’s now on your jewelry.
Why not save all this hassle and potential grief by simply using the Champion Polishing Cloth? When cleaning away tarnish from your brass jewelry, simultaneously a wax-like protective film is penetrating into the pores of your brass jewelry’s surface. This protective film not only gives your brass jewelry a barrier against further tarnishing but also helps to maintain that beautiful shine.
You’ll never have to worry about staining your clothes. This cloth is an effective, quick, and safe brass cleaning method.
Well, there you have it. Now you know how to keep brass jewelry from tarnishing. The end result is beautiful, shiny brass jewelry. Does brass tarnish? Of course, but now you know what to do when it does. We’ve provided food for thought when it comes to DIY brass jewelry cleaning recipes. You have choices on how to remove tarnish from your jewelry. The Champion Polishing Cloth is a more effective and safer solution to the myriad of so-called cheap DIY recipes out there.
The important thing to know about the Champion Polishing Cloth is its long history of 90+ years of removing tarnish from brass jewelry. Over that long period of time, it’s gained an army of loyal customers. This simple polishing cloth produces amazing polishing results. You’ll not only save yourself time but also money. The time spent researching online about how to keep brass jewelry from tarnishing is over once you’ve decided to invest in the Champion Polishing Cloth!
By the way, in terms of value and cost-effectiveness, one 9″ x 12″ Champion Polishing Cloth will outlast one gallon of brass cleaner and polish. We appreciate you reading this blog post and we hope it’s given you the information needed on how to keep brass jewelry from tarnishing. Happy polishing!